Were you one of the millions of people who wrote New Year’s resolutions this year? Many of us did. And many have already fallen short of goals set for the new year. Perhaps you even crafted goals complete with step-by-step plans about how you would transform those dreams into actuality.
I suspect quite a few of us fall somewhere in between. Where are you in this process? Now some people would consider “dreams” in a negative connotation – “Oh, he’s such a dreamer,” – equating the term “dreamer” with being a vagabond, a vagrant. Dreaming is the essence of greatness, of genius – the evidence of the new and the unseen. But how is it possible to move beyond the dream, to make those dreams an actuality?
For me, after reading Michael Hyatt’s post on Goals, this year’s list looks a bit different than the goals I have written in the past.
First, I allowed myself to dream and aspire. Yes! I really did want to:
- Lose weight
- Get fit
- Build a viable business
- Grow spiritually
- Build relationships
- Meet the needs of my family
But this year, the dreams are taking a different tack.
I changed course by taking concrete steps towards writing down the specific goals and the steps I would take to make them actually happen. In addition, I [gasp] actually put a date down for each goal and the accompanying steps. The clincher? Referring back to Michael Hyatt’s blog post, I wrote down my “why” – the heart-felt internal motivations for following through and getting things done.
And now, I find myself at an important benchmark, in need of a checkup.
I like to think of it as a doctor’s visit. Any time I visit my doctor’s office, the staff always begins by completing a brief assessment of my vital signs – a quick check of my temperature, heart rate, blood pressure, and weight.
Those measurements are then recorded on my medical chart. In comes the doc for a deeper look at my eyes, ears, nose and mouth. Using a stethoscope, he listens closely to my heart and breathing.
He asks questions. He listens to my answers. He assesses my health making a diagnosis based on the evidence gathered.
I realized I am at the end of the first quarter of this year and had to ask myself questions:
- How is it even possible that one fourth of the year gone?
- What have I done with my time?
- How far have I come towards making my dreams a reality?
- Am I on target to meet each deadline?
This week I’ll be checking and reporting the “vital signs” of my projects by taking a close look at my progress.
How will I do that? I will:
- evaluate the systems I have in place.
- re-examine my goals and plans adding more specific, smaller steps as necessary.
- review the “whys” and correcting the course if needed.
- play the role of “nurse and doctor” as I complete an assessment of the pulse, the pressure, the heartbeat, the breath, the very life of each goal.
I’m pretty sure this is going to be an eye-opener.
While I do evaluate progress on a daily basis, I do not look at the “big picture” as often as I did. I keep telling myself, “This will be a good thing,” as I come to terms with where I am.
I thank you for joining me in this humble journey beyond the dream.
What are you doing to stay on target in 2013?